David Brat: Embrace Christian Capitalism, or Hitler Will Come Back
When David Brat defeated House Majority leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) in the Republican primary of Virginia’s 7th Congressional District last night, House Republicans likely lost their only Jewish representative. In his place, they may have gained a radically pro-capitalist Christian theologian.
Christian Tea Party candidates are certainly not unusual, but a trail of writings show that Brat, an economics professor at Randolph-Macon college, has an especially radical theology to support his right-wing politics. Brat’s CV lists him as a graduate of Hope College, a Christian school in Michigan, and Princeton Theological Seminary, a Presbyterian Church U.S.A. seminary in New Jersey. He claims to be a “fairly orthodox Calvinist,” but several of his published writings expose a unsettling core theology that is centered around lifting up unregulated, free-market capitalism as a morally righteous system that churches should embrace—or else.
In a 2011 paper entitled “God and the Advanced Mammon — Can Theological Types Handle Usury and Capitalism?”, published in Interpretation: A Journal of Bible and Theology, Brat champions the moral superiority of the capitalistic system. “Capitalist markets and their expansion in China and India have provided more for the common good, more ‘social welfare,’ than any other policy in the past ten years,” he writes, adding “So, as a seminary student concerned with human welfare, I naturally wanted to learn about these free markets.”
Brat goes on to list a number of arguments for and against the practice of usury, but concludes the paper with a chilling warning about what will happen if churches fail to build a movement in support of free-market capitalism—namely, a Hitler-like figure could rise to power. He writes:
Capitalism is here to stay, and we need a church model that corresponds to that reality. Read Nietzsche. Nietzsche’s diagnosis of the weak modern Christian democratic man was spot on. Jesus was a great man. Jesus said he was the Son of God. Jesus made things happen. Jesus had faith. Jesus actually made people better. Then came the Christians. What happened? What went wrong? We appear to be a bit passive. Hitler came along, and he did not meet with unified resistance. I have the sinking feeling that it could all happen again, quite easily. The church should rise up higher than Nietzsche could see and prove him wrong. We should love our neighbor so much that we actually believe in right and wrong, and do something about it. If we all did the right thing and had the guts to spread the word, we would not need the government to backstop every action we take.
More at ThinkProg: thinkprogress.org
This guy is not only batshit, but he is scary as fuck.